Dorcas “was always doing good and helping the poor” (Acts 9:36). Dorcas is a disciple, a follower of Jesus, who devotes her life to good works and charity. She does a lot of sewing for people and does it all the time, turning out tunics and comfortable clothing that the needy appreciate and friends admire “because Dorcas—sews them.”
Her sewing makes her famous, but her acts of kindness make her beloved. One day, however, Dorcas gets sick and dies, leaving her friends, community, and people she helped weeping and wondering: “How are we going to replace Dorcas? Who can do what Dorcas did?”
“Peter!” they cry, “Dorcas is dead! Come save her! We need her!”
He comes. He prays. She lives again. Her good works and acts of charity continue. Dorcas does what others can’t, or won’t, do. Sure, her family and church and friends could’ve survived without Dorcas. But don’t say that her death wouldn’t have made a difference. Don’t say that just anyone could’ve done what she did. Don’t say anyone can serve like you can serve or be a mom to your child like you can be a mom to your child.
Each of us is “God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works” (Ephesians 2:10). And my good works may not be your good works. Jesus doesn’t mass-produce his disciples. He creates us one by one. God designed you to be you. When your life is over, he will not ask you why you weren’t Moses or Dorcas or your mom or dad. If you don’t pursue a life of love that is your life and your love, he will ask why you weren’t you.
When you’re in the middle of trying to do something good and you’re thinking, “This is all right,” and then the wheels fall off, think of this story of Dorcas. She was taking care of people, doing what is good, and she died. God wants the same for you. That you would die—not literally, but in your attitude and faith. When your own pretend self isn’t in charge any more. When your daily schedule isn’t determined by trying to please everyone else and look good to them. When you don’t judge yourself unfairly, with the haunting voice of your mom or dad telling you that you’re not good enough. These must die for you to truly live.
For you to be the version of you that God designed you to be.
PRAYER: Thank you, God, for making me to be who you want me to be. Be patient with me as I find myself, and trust that my identity is from you and not from others, not from my performance. Born again, I am ready to live! Amen.
FURTHER MEDITATION: Read the story of Dorcas in Acts 9:36-42. What is something that you do well that others appreciate? Thank God for that today, and glorify him with it!